Posted by Jeffrey B. Mullan, MassDOT Secretary and CEO
Again this week, there were news stories about MassDOT's handling of the situation regarding the light fixture that fell in the O'Neill Tunnel. Let me use this opportunity to write directly about the situation.
MassDOT is an organization of 10,000 people, responsible for hundreds of miles of roadways, bridges, rail tracks, thousands of pieces of complex equipment, in addition to aviation oversight and the management and operation of our RMV. Our employees include some of the most professional and public-minded people working anywhere. We have very skilled engineers who are held accountable for their engineering and technical judgments. A small number of employees, including me, have responsibility for public information.
After the light fixture fell on February 8, the engineering, maintenance and operations staffs of our Highway Division responded swiftly, appropriately, and proactively to ensure public safety and to uncover any systemic issues. That part of the incident is well underway and is under control. It is now clear that the incident was not reported immediately. I have emphasized the performance and professionalism of the staff, and, as the public face of MassDOT, have assumed responsibility for any gaps or delays in the public dissemination of the information. I chose not to publicly fault anyone but myself for this failure. Later, when asked when I learned of the incident, I answered that question truthfully. My emphasis on taking responsibility for the incident unfortunately created the impression that I intentionally mislead the public. I didn’t.
It is clear to all of us that the way to fix state transportation is to stay on the course we have set. For my part, I will continue to encourage a culture of openness, transparency, and accountability at MassDOT.
Worcester: Belmont Street Bridge Opens posted on Mar 23
MassDOT has announced that the Belmont Street Bridge that carries Route 9 over Interstate 290 in Worcester is now open to its permanent configuration. The bridge now features two eastbound lanes toward Shrewsbury, two westbound lanes toward Lincoln Square and a newly-added, left-turn lane through …Continue Reading Worcester: Belmont Street Bridge Opens
Highway Assistance Patrol Program: MAPFRE Sponsorship Extension posted on Mar 23
MassDOT is pleased to announce an agreement to extend MAPFRE Insurance’s sponsorship of the Highway Assistance Patrol program (HAP) through March 2018. This extension marks the 15th year of partnership between MassDOT and MAPFRE in providing excellent customer service and safe, quick clearance on the …Continue Reading Highway Assistance Patrol Program: MAPFRE Sponsorship Extension
South Coast Rail: Notice of Project Change posted on Mar 22
The Baker-Polito Administration’s Department of Transportation (MassDOT) has filed a Notice of Project Change (NPC) for the South Coast Rail (SCR) Project with the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act (MEPA) Office on March 15, 2017. The Notice advances South Coast Rail as a phased project that …Continue Reading South Coast Rail: Notice of Project Change